Showing posts with label Downloads. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Downloads. Show all posts

Creating Colour Palettes with Gimp


In the first two parts in this series of colour palette tutorials we showed How To Generate Colour Palettes With Palettable, Colormind, And Coolors, then then how to Create Colour Palettes Using Cyotek Palette Editor. In both cases colour schemes were created by starting with one colour then generating others to form a harmonious palette. In the first tutorial the palettes were exported as images, whilst the second showed how to export a palette as a native Gimp palette file.

This final colour palette tutorial will follow on from the others by showing how images in Gimp can be used to create colour palettes. It will then show how to import the Gimp palette file created in Cyotek. We begin however by explaining how to create colour palettes from gradients.

The Palettes Dockable Dialogue

Before we can work with palettes in Gimp, we need to make sure their dockable dialogues (tabs) are visible. In the standard Gimp set up the tabs can be seen top right (highlighted in green). If they're not visible select Windows > Dockable Dialogs > Palettes and they will appear.

Creating Colour Palettes With Gradients


Gimp comes with many gradients already added, and its easy to create your own. Whatever gradients are available, they can all be used to create colour palettes.



1/ With the Palettes tab active, right click anywhere in the list of palettes then select Import Palette.



2/ The above window will appear. Select the Gradient radial button.




3/ From the drop down list, select a gradient to use.



4/ The colours for the palette will be displayed in the preview window. 



5/ The default number of colours for a palette is 256, but this can be edited with the Number of colors slider, (the total number of colours a palette can have in Gimp is around 10,000). The number of colours above has been changed to 35.

The default number of columns palettes are displayed in is 16, although this too can be edited, this time with the Columns slider.


When you're ready click Import



6/ The new palette will be visible, top right.




7/ The image above shows the palette with the Palette Editor tab active. In the space provided the name of the palette can be changed. Here its been changed to Gradient Palette Example.


Creating A Colour Palette From An Image Using The Colour Picker Tool

Probably the simplest way of creating a palette is to load an image in Gimp and use the Color Picker tool to select colours. 

1/ With an image loaded in Gimp, select the Palette tab, then right click anywhere in the list of palettes. From the drop down list select New Palette.




2/ A blank space will appear where the new palette will soon go.



3/ The palette can be given a name.



4/ Select the Color Picker tool from the Tools panel on the left. 


Because there are thousands of colours in this (and most) images the Sample Average option has been selected (highlighted in red). This will average out the colour within the radius of pixels selected. Here a radius of 9 has been used. This step is by no means essential, but it can be a good way of evening out colours and making them easier to select.


5/ Under the Color Picker tool options Use Info Window has also been selected. With the left mouse button held down, this window will show the colour under the cursor as it moves around the image.  Information about each colour will also be displayed, such as RGB colour percentages, the hex value and its X,Y coordinates.

6/  release the left mouse button and the selected colour will be added as the foreground colour, highlighted in red, above.


7/ Click the icon highlighted above to add the new foreground colour to the palette.



8/ Use the color Picker tool to select the next colour for the new palette. Add the colour to the palette by repeating step 7. Repeat this process until you have all the colours you need for the new palette.

Importing A Palette From An Image


1/ Although a standard image could be used for this method, the resulting palette would be made up of thousands of colours, so a work around is to change the image to a GIF which will limit the colours to 256.


The first step is to select  Image > precision > 8 bit integer, so the image exports correctly as a GIF.





2/ Export the image as a GIF.


3/ Load the GIF version of the image back into Gimp. With the Palette tab active right click anywhere in the list of palettes. From the drop down menu select Import Palette.



4/ The above window will open. Select the Image radial button and the preview area will show as many colours of the palette as will fit.


As you can see, the Number of colors slider is greyed out and can't be used. This is because a GIF image was used for the palette. If the inability to edit the number of colours is a problem the next method offers a better alternative.

When you're ready, hit the Import button.




5/ The palette can now be seen under the palettes tab.




6/ Under the Palette Editor tab the full range of colours in the palette can be seen, The palette can be renamed in the space provided.


Creating a Colour Palette From An Image



1/ As with the previous method of creating a palette from an image, the first step is selecting Image > Precision > 8 bit integer.



2/ Now select Image > Mode > Indexed.




3/ The above window will open. Select Generate optimum palette.



4/ As you could see in step 3 the maximum number of colours for this palette is 256. However, in this instance we don't need that many so this has been changed to 25. Here we can edit the number of colours for the palette, which we couldn't do when we turned the image into a GIF.


When you're ready hit the Convert button. 




6/ The new palette can now be seen under the Palettes tab.



7/ Although we can see the palette under the Palettes tab, if we were to close down Gimp the palette would be lost. To make sure the palette is saved click on it, then hit the duplicate icon, highlighted in green.



8/ Under the Palette Editor we can see the palette. 


When a palette is visible in the Palette Editor, it is the active palette, and if any palette color is clicked on, it will become the active foreground colour, seen to the left of Gimp. 

9/ The new palette can also be renamed in the space highlighted in red.


Importing a Palette File Into Gimp


As with many graphics software Gimp has its own native palettes file format. These palette files can be imported into, and exported out of Gimp.

In part two of this series on colour palettes we exported a palette file from Cyotek, and now we're going to import it into Gimp. If you'd like to see how this works for yourself, the colour palette file can be downloaded here. The file is stored on Google Drive so you can be sure its a safe download.


1/ With the Pallete tab active, right click anywhere within the list of palettes. From the drop down list select Import Palette.



2/ In the window that opens select the Palette file radial button. Click the icon highlighted in green.


3/ Using the window that opens, navigate to where the palette file is stored on your PC. Select it then hit the Open button.



4/  Now hit the Import button.



5/ The palette will now be added to the Palettes tab.



6/ The palette will also be visible in the Palette Editor tab, where it can be renamed etc, although its ready to use as it is.

Now that we've covered a lot of ground with calour palettes it should be much easier to generate a range of colours for a project. Colour seems an easy subject, until you start thinking about it, so hopefully this series of tutorials will take some of the guess work and stress out of using colour.

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Affinity Designer Paper Cut Assets



In plenty of time for Valentines Day and beyond I've been working on a set of  paper cut effect assets for Affinity Designer that can be downloaded for free. They can be used in both personal and commercial projects, as explained fully in the included PDF.

If you don't presently own this software, I'd heartily recommend heading over to Affinity's website and downloading a free trial. Due to the Covid pandemic Affinity are kindly offering a 3 month trial period on all three of their software packages, as well as other items in their store.

Whats Included In The Paper Cut Assets For Affinity Designer

Included in this download are two Affinity files that contain the paper cut flowers. One set of flowers are noncoloured, so you can easily add your own and make the flowers unique to you.

The second Affinity file contains coloured flowers that can be used as is. 

There is a third Affinity file, and that contains the Valentines image seen above.

The fourth file also included is the set of assets.  Installing both the coloured and non-coloured flowers as assets to Affinity Designer means paper cut designs can quickly and easily be created by dragging each flower from the assets window onto the canvas area. There are also flower components such as petals and flower centres, to enable you to make your own flowers almost from scratch.



To grab these flowers to use in your own designs, click the Gumroad button below, scroll, add your preferred price (or 0 if you're broke), then hit the 'I want this' button

How To Install The Assets File

Installing assets in Affinity Designer is very easy. If you're unsure what to do, just follow these steps.

 1/ With Affinity Designer open, make sure Assets is the active tab to the top right.

2/ If you can't see the Assets tab, select View > Studio > Assets and it will appear.

3/ Click the four horizontal lines icon to the right of the Assets tab.

4/ From the drop down list select Import Assets.

5/ Navigate to the location of the asets file on your PC. Select it, then hit Open.

6/ It may take a few moments, but you should soon see the paper cut flower assets under the Assets tab, and ready to use.

Enjoy your new Affinity Designer assets and have fun creating new and brilliant designs.
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Tiptoes Christmas Little Planet


This year's festive jigsaw puzzle is a little different in that its a small planet scene. The image was taken at Dreamers, which offers a great Christmas scene to help immerse yourself in the atmosphere of the season. The location description says,

Bundle up the little ones for a family trip full of winter activities, an advent calendar by Tiptoes, and visit Santa to send a letter to the North Pole!

This jigsaw puzzle is available to download and keep, so you can solve it in your own time, or you can play it below on this page. The downloadable version however is a little more difficult. 



To view the  puzzle here full screen click the icon to the lower right. There are also icons to the lower left that will show a ghost image of the puzzle as well as a thumbnail.


There are lots more jigsaw puzzles here.


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How To Create A Seamless Tiled Texture Or Pattern In Inkscape

In this tutorial we'll show how to create a tiled texture or pattern in Inkscape, using a fleur de lis design surrounded by an ornate border. Since creating the fleur de lis is really a subject in its own right, and would needlessly increase the length of this tutorial, we won't go into how to do that here.

Instead, you can of course use your own design or download the fleur de lis SVG used here. The download includes a png of the fleur de lis, as well as a png of the finished tile created here along with its SVG file.

This tutorial focuses on how to create the ornate border and ensure it is perfectly symmetrical, how to add the fleur de lis, and then how to turn what we've created into a tile that can be repeated seamlesly.

All the images here can be clicked to view full size.

There is also a video version of this tutorial on our YouTube channel.

How To Create A Tiled Texture Or Pattern In Inkscape

1/ With Inkscape open drag a guide from the top ruler, then one from the side ruler to the left.

2/ Select the elipse tool, and holding down Shift > Ctrl drag the cursor to create a circle. The circle here has an outer stroke of 4px and no fill.

3/ With the circle selected hit Ctrl > D to duplicate it. Now drag the duplicate to the right so both circles connect as in the image above. Hold down Ctrl whilst dragging the duplicate so it moves in a straight line.

4/ Select one of the circles, hold down Shift and select the other circle. Both should now be selected. press Ctrl > G to group the circles. Now drag the circles so the centre aligns with the vertical guide, as above.

5/ With the circle selected hit Ctrl > D again to duplicate them. Hit the Rotate Selection 90° button, highlighted in red, above.

6/ There should now be four circles placed as above.

7/ Drag the cursor over the circles so they're all selected, then whilst holding down Ctrl drag them so they're aligned at the cross point of the guides, as above.

8/ Select the two vertically positioned circles (the ones that form an upright figure of 8), and hit Ctrl> Shift > G to ungroup them.

Select the top circle and hit Ctrl > D to duplicate it. Hold down Ctrl and drag the duplicate to position it so it touches the two horizontal circles. The thickness of the circle's outline should overlap.

9/ Repeat step 8 with the lower circle so you get a formation of circles as above.

A lot of the circles we're adding here are used to measure spacing and to add proportion to the finished design. They will eventually be deleted.

10/ With the rectangle tool drag out a rectangle shape and align its edges as above. The thickness of its outline should overlap the thickness of the circles, rather than butt up against them.

11/ Select the central horizontal circles and duplicate them. Hold down Ctrl and place them towards the top, as above. Again, the circles' outline should overlap that of the circle it touches.

Repeat this step and place the duplicated circles towards the bottom. You should have an arrangement of circles as in the above image.

Forming The Ornate Border

We now have all we need to create the border.

1/ First remove the circles we don't need. Select a circle and hit Delete on the keyboard to remove it. If you delete a circle by mistake hit Ctrl > Z to undo. You should end up with an arrangement of shapes as above.

2/ Select a pair of circles and hit Ctrl > Shift G to ungroup them. Do this for each of the three pairs of circles.

Now select the top two circles and hit Path > Union so they form one shape. Do the same with the lower two circles, but leave the central two circles as they are.

3/ Select one of the central circles, hold Shift and select the rectangle. Select Path > Union to form one shape. Repeat this with the other central circle, so you get a shape as above.

4/ Select the upper two circles, hold Shift and select the rectangle. Now hit Path > Difference.

5/ You should now have a shape as above.

6/ Repeat step 4 to create the shape above.

We now have the border to place around the fleur de lis design.

Ensuring The Shape Is Symmetrical

Following the steps below to make sure our border shape is symmetrical is not strictly necessary, but it may save us having to work out what went wrong if the pattern doesn't repeat perfectly.

1/ First add a few more guides that align precisely as in the image above.

2/ Use the rectangle tool to draw a box that covers one quarter of the design. The box should consist of a fill with no stroke. Here the box has been given a colour so the edges can be seen clearly. Each edge should join to the guides, as you can see in the above image.

3/ Select both the rectangle and the border design.

4/ Now select Path > Intersection.

5/ We now have just one quarter of the original border design.

6/ Duplicate this shape, then hit the Flip Selected Objects Horizontally icon, highlighted above in red.

7/ This is the result with the duplicate flipped.

8/ hold down Ctrl and drag the duplicate as above. the two shapes should snap together if snapping is enabled. (You can see what snapping options are enabled here to the right of the image in step 6, which shows the full UI of Inkscape).

9/ Select both objects then hit Path > Union, and they will form one shape.

10/ Duplicate this shape and flip it vertically.

11/ Hold Ctrl and drag the duplicate up so the two objects align as above.

12/ Hit Path > Union and you'll have the perfectly symmetrical shape you see above.

Creating The Seamless Tile

1/ Now we have our symmetrical border design its time to add the fleur de lis and create a seamless tile. Firstly we'll hide the guides as we don't need them right now. Select View > Guides to hide them.

2/ To add the fleur de lis SVG, navigate to where its stored on your PC, then drag it into Inkscape. To resize it, hold down Ctrl > Shift and drag a corner arrow until you get the size you want. Now place it in the centre of the border.

3/ To make sure the fleur de lis is centred within the border object, hit Shift > Ctrl > A to open the Align and Distribute panel. Select both the fleur de lis and border and hit the two options highlighted in red and green above.

4/ Both objects are now aligned just as we want them. Select both objects again and group them (Ctrl > G). Now hit Ctrl > D to make a duplicate.

5/ Drag the duplicate and place it as above. The edges of both objects should snap together.

6/ Make another duplicate and place it as above.

7/ Select the two upper objects and duplicate them. Hold Ctrl and drag them into position as in in the image above.

8/ Drag the central object to the side and ungroup it (Shift > Ctrl > G). Select the four other objects and group them.

9/ Place the fleur de lis from the ungrouped object back into the centre of the four objects. Use the Align and Distribute panel again to centre it, then group it to the four other grouped objects.

The border we removed from the centre can be deleted.

10/ Turn on the visibilty of the guides again (View > Guides), then add a few more so they look like the above. The central guides seen here aren't important, its the outer guides we'll be using.

11/ With the Rectangle tool, draw a rectangle. All of the rectangle's corners should be at the centres of the four outer motifs, as can be seen above. The guides we're using cross at these points.

12/ Select the rectangle and the grouped object. Now select Edit > Clip > Set.

13/ The object has now been clipped, and we have a tile that when repeated will form a seamless pattern.

Trying Out the Seamless Tile in Inkscape

1/ The tile can now be exported out of Inkscape and used elsewhere, but we can see how it looks before we do that. The basic way of trying out the tile is to duplicate it, drag it next to the original, and just keep duplicating and dragging.

2/ Another option is to select the tile then hit Edit > Clone > Create Tiled Clones.

3/ This panel will open to the right of Inkscape. Add the number of rows and columns you want in the area highlighted in red, then hit the Create button.

4/ Inkscape may take a second or two, but it will produce a tiling pattern made up of the number of rows and columns selected.

Thats all there is to creating a seamless tiled texture or pattern in Inkscape. I hope you found this useful, and we'll be back with more tutorials very soon.
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